Craeley Green withstand Harefield United onslaught
Crawley Green’s defence survived a second half onslaught from Harefield to earn a hard-fought win on Saturday.
After a scrappy opening in torrential rain, Harefield forced the first save when Samual Shaw’s shot was denied by George Rose who then tipped over Tashan Jordan’s dipping shot.
But Crawley hit the front after 28 minutes when Billy Lobjoit played in Phil Draycott down the left who made a surging run into the box.
The ball fell to Sam Holmes who crossed for Mark Bunker to score from close range at the back post.
Harefield spurned their best chance minutes later when Shaw missed the target from two yards.
Two minutes later Harefield keeper Jacob Ballheimer’s poor clearance fell to Lobjoit who shot just wide.
The visitors’ half-time team talk seemed to work as Harefield mounted sustained pressure after the break, with Tyler Ingham’s superb last-ditch tackle stopping Tashan Jordan as he bore down on goal.
The Crawley faithful feared the worst, but instead the opposite happened.
In the 64th minute Ingham repelled another attack with a long clearance which Holmes controlled and found Lobjoit on the edge of the box.
He turned inside and shot left-footed past Ballheimer.
Less than a minute later Harefield made it 2-1 when Shaw’s low hard cross somehow passed through a melee of legs and ended up in the net.
Harefield mounted further pressure, with Tashan Jordan’s shot hitting the bar with 14 minutes left.
And a minute later the ball was in the Crawley net, but the referee ruled it out for a foul on Rose, and Crawley held out.
Crawley face back-to-back away trips to local rivals Leighton Town on Tuesday (KO 7.45pm) and Dunstable Town on Saturday (3pm).
Crawley Reserves suffered a 3-1 home defeat to AFC Oakley.